11-13-2014 Journal – My Cloud, My Rules!   Leave a comment

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I’m relaxing this morning for a number of reasons.  This is the only time of the day I can really settle back and watch some NASA TV without interruptions of any kind.  I always try to keep current with what they’re doing especially with the upcoming launch of this country’s next generation of space vehicle, the Orion, happening within the next three weeks. This unmanned first flight is the next step to seeing people actually visiting nearby asteroids and then on to Mars in a few years. For me it’s something that’s pretty damn exciting since I’ve been a huge space nerd for my entire life and never thought I’d live to see some of the things I’ve seen in the last few years. It also relaxes me like nothing else seems to do (do not include sex in that thought).

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It’s also the time of day where I usually write my blog postings without phone calls and constant conversational interruptions.  Most of my recent weeks have been a steady diet of all things computer.  I posted a few weeks ago about the disaster that was my attempt to upgrade my home wireless network. After a great deal of time and effort I finally accomplished what I set out to do. Unfortunately all of those efforts were just the first and most important step in my much larger project of creating and installing my own personal Cloud system.  It required a great deal of research to find the proper equipment and software as well as the training I needed to do it myself.  As of this morning I’m just hours away from the completion of that project and I’m feeling damn good about it.

One of the things that made the project so easy (a relative term) was a device called the My Cloud.  It’s a Western Digital product that attaches to a home network and provides a storage area for any and all devices included in that network.  It sounds like a simple matter but it is anything but.  Not only does it connect all of my computers, laptops, IPads, Android tablets, smart phones and printers together, it permits me to access the network with any of my wireless devices from anywhere I can find a Wi-Fi connection. We can upload photographs and videos from our cell phone and IPad cameras from just about anywhere. Everything is heavily encrypted and virus protected with layers of passwords and firewalls making access possible only by previously approved people.  Unlike most commercial Cloud ventures from major computer entities, my cloud cannot be accessed by the government without my consent. 

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This all started a few years ago when our home was burglarized.  Part of that "smash and grab" crime involved the theft of my better-half’s laptop.  We lost more than two years of her photographs of family and friends which could never be replaced. Also every time I have a computer problem I seem to lose data when forced to restore or recover the device.  It’s not that we don’t do proper backups, it’s that we sometimes forget to do them.  With this new system some of our backups will now be done automatically into the Cloud which has been installed in an area not easily discovered by marauding  criminals.  Between the two of us we have more than thirty thousand photographs and five thousand songs in storage that are now safe from loss. It’s easy to replace a device but some other things are just irreplaceable and require extra protection. It’ll take a day of two to copy everything completely to the new four terabyte Cloud but I’ll certainly sleep better knowing it’s finally done.

So hooray for me and it’s back to NASA and another steaming cup of hot and delicious "Midnight Velvet" coffee.  That’ll get my heart started for sure.

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